Chapter 31 – Messiah (1)
A large shopping mall in front of Sinjung-dong Station.
Every day and every weekend, it would usually be packed with people, but now it was nothing but a silent fortress.
All the windows were covered in newspaper, and at the entrance where guests would enter, there was a wall of shopping carts.
There were three men standing at the entrance, holding onto crudely made spears.
They stood by the front door outside of where they couldn’t see the inside due to the newspapers. One of the males took an ID card from within his bosom, and inserted into the door crack.
As the door opened, the card disappeared like that of a snake’s tongue.
Behind the door were three more men watching the windows, standing at attention.
They relaxed only after confirming the other party’s identity.
“How is it?”
“Didn’t see anything. The weather is going nuts.”
The two parties started stalking.
“What about the guys in Group B?”
“I couldn’t find them.”
“You couldn’t find them?”
“Couldn’t find any bodies.”
The conversation wasn’t heading in a good direction.
“What about footprints? Were there no footprints in the snow?”
“Look at this weather, why would you even ask? Look, even our footprints have already disappeared, right?”
“So you came back just like that?”
“Damn it, look at the situation, what the hell do you want me to do? Just let us in already! We’re going to freeze to death!”
As the conversation started heating up, the other guards moved to steer clear of the returners.
Three men with snow on their heads and shoulders entered the mart.
The three of them immediately took off their helmets, one of them, a chubby man with sparse facial hair opening his mouth to speak.
“He’s not even a fucking awakened, does he think he can talk to us like we’re fucking servants? Fucking bastard. He can’t even deal with a monster face to face.”
The man angrily complained, his facial expression also indicative of his rage.
The other two quickly left, not wanting to deal with the angry man’s complaints.
“Well regardless, it looks like it’ll be really cold tonight.”
“This is the perfect weather to embrace a woman at night. What do you say? You wanna pick one?”
The man who seemed to be in his mid twenties who was speaking to the chubby man, could only reply with a wry smile on his face.
“In this fucked up world, doing it in the ass is one of the best things left that you can do. You gotta go for it when you can.”
“······Besides that, what do you think happened to Group B?”
The man in his mid twenties tried to changed the topic again.
“If you ask me, they probably met with some sort of accident after trying to enjoy that bitch Baek Jiyeon.”
However, despite that, the chubby man tried to change the topic back to something that was vulgar.
“There’s a guy in that group named Ahn Tae Seok, and that guy is girl crazy. There’s no reason why he won’t take advantage of a naked woman lying in the snow right?”
It was at this point that the man in his mid-twenties gave up on the conversation.
‘You fat fuck, is humping a woman all you can think of in this situation?’
Fortunately, it wasn’t long before the chubby man stopped with his vulgar words.
“Damn, regardless, no one will be able to take a step outside······.”
“Keep those kinds of thoughts to yourself.”
A woman walked forth from the gloom. The woman was basically a walking skeleton that looked like she could collapse at any second.
The chubby man made an unsightly expression when he saw the woman.
However, as soon as he saw the mark on the back of her right hand, the unsightly expression disappeared, and his face turned pale.
“M, my apologies miss.”
“You disgust me, fuck off.”
“M, my apologies. My life, please spare my life······.”
The three men swiftly nodded their heads and quickly climbed up an escalator to the second floor.
The woman returned to what was originally a pharmacy on the first floor.
Inside were two men.
One man was standing guard while the other was reclining on a couch, the latter tapping his head with a sheathed sword that you would find in a historical drama.
The woman spoke to the man who was sitting on the sofa.
“Anyways, it seems like a fuss was made.”
The man stopped tapping his head after hearing what the woman said.
“What kind of fuss?”
“The group that was sent out to execute that one woman as an example has disappeared.”
“Were they eaten by monsters, or did they run away?”
“An investigation team was sent out, but it looks like they weren’t able to find anything.”
“A failure? Why?”
“The blizzard outside······.”
The man started laughing as though he heard something ridiculous, and continued to tap his head.
“I should have named ourselves something other than Messiah. Looks like the people think that we’re some sort of angels guiding the lost to paradise. Looks like I have to throw out the investigation team as soon as the sun comes up tomorrow morning. After I’ve cut off their achilles tendons, that is. I hope the yellow-eyed demon like them.”
Having said those words, the corners of the man’s lips curved up in a light smile.
There were no signs that the raging blizzard was going to stop anytime soon.
Kim Tae Hoon was looking down at a large supermarket from another building across the street.
Although the blizzard made visibility zero, it caused no issues when drawing a picture in his head.
‘There’s no one on the roof, and although the front door is well guarded, they’re all crudely armed.’
Turning his eyes away, Kim Tae Hoon gazed through the darkness that the blizzard had wrought.
‘According to Baek Jiyeon, there are sixty sacrificial candidates inside, and thirty or so guards monitoring the candidates and generally guarding the supermarket. In addition, the sacrifices were split into two groups, one on the second floor, and the other on the third floor.’
A blizzard and the dark.
In front of these two elements, all beasts would do the same thing.
They would find some obscure corner where they can avoid the cold and try to hold out for the night.
Although humans had overcome such difficulties with the use of tools and technology, the humans inside the large market were in the same situation as the beasts.
Kim Tae Hoon turned around.
The hunt had begun.
The hunt had begun.
A huge truck sped towards the large market’s entrance, smashing through the glass sliding doors and ramming straight through the entrance.
The three who were assigned to guard the door were suddenly struck by the car, suffering terrible injuries.
“What’s going on?”
“Ea, earthquake, is it an earthquake?”
The sudden rumbling caused by the incident at the entrance forced everyone who had been trying to sleep through the weather to wake up.
“A truck has smashed through the entrance!”
The chaos started to spread from the second floor to the third floor.
The prisoners were held in beauty parlors and dry cleaners that had been retrofitted into prisons. Listening to the chaos around them, the overseers looked at each other and spoke.
“What the hell is happening on the first floor?”
“Is it monsters?”
A gate that connected the fourth floor parking lot to the third floor clicked open.
A figure silently came out from behind the gate, the gate loudly closing behind the figure, who until this point, had entered very stealthily.
It was loud enough to be audible.
Loud enough for everyone on the third floor to hear.
“Euwahk! Wh, what was that noise?”
“Wh, what was that? It almost sounded like a door closing, right?”
“A door? Is there a door here? The parking lot has an escalator going down right?”
“Emergency exit, there’s an emergency exit! But aren’t all of the emergency exits locked?”
The sound of both the guards tensing up could be heard.
The prisoners, their arms and legs tied up, who had just become captives for a day began to tremble.
“Go check it out.”
“I said go check it out. But what if it’s a monster?”
Eventually, one of them put on a helmet and headed towards the emergency exit with a spear in his hand.
‘Damn it, why did something like this happen?’
Filled with irritation and regret, the man stepped forward with heavy steps containing anxiety and fear.
What do I do if it’s a monster?
What do I do if something happens?
Is this where I die?
Will I just become a monster’s meal?
Worried about the gate, the man slowly drew closer to the emergency exit.
Swishing around, he investigated his surroundings.
‘Th, there’s nothing here?’
To his eyes, there was no sign of anything having come through. There was only the slightest trace of having been someone who opened and came through the gate.
However, since the man was hoping that there was nobody there, naturally, his eyes ignored the slight traces and chose to believe that nothing had happened.
The man let out a sigh of relief.
The man who had sighed thinking that nothing had happened turned around and walked back with lighter steps than when he had approached the emergency exit.
Then he said.
“Hey it was nothing! There wasn’t anythi······.”
As he turned to the corner and arrived at where he was before, the sight of his colleagues collapsed on the floor entered his eyes. One had a hole in his head and the other’s neck was twisted 180 degrees.
That was the last sound to come out of his mouth.
That was the last thing he saw.
A man approached the confused man and broke his neck in one swoop.
With that, the man’s body collapsed.
One of the sacrificial prisoners screamed.
However, the man still moved and acted calmly despite the scream. He didn’t bother to stop her from screaming.
Instead, he stripped one of the guards of his jacket and helmet, putting them on.
Then, he shouted at the people coming up from the second floor who had heard the scream.
“A situation’s developed on the third floor! Hurry!”
“Hurry up and come over! Quickly!”
The man spit out a hasty reply as he rushed over. Behind that man was a featherless arrow that flew after him like a bird.
“Damn it, there’s nobody inside the truck!”
A man shouted after looking at the driver’s seat of the truck that had smashed through the entrance.
Then ten men who had gathered around the entrance all had the same look on their faces.
They were looking up and frowning.
“Are you saying that the truck moved on its own?”
“Does that even make sense?”
“Damn it, just who the hell is this? This monster didn’t suddenly become a monster did it?”
More chaos to add onto the chaos.
“Something’s happened on the third floor!”
A man screamed as he ran down the escalator connecting the first and second floors.
They didn’t consider that the person under the jacket and helmet was an outsider.
So nobody thought to stop the man from walking down the escalator.
Rather, those on the first floor were just surprised at what the man had said.
One of them asked a question.
“The third floor? What happened on the third floor?”
“What is this? Why is the first floor like this? Why did a truck smash through the entrance?”
“Fuck man, we don’t know either. The truck had suddenly smashed through the entrance on its own!”
“So what? So you all just decided to gather here? What about the wardens? What about the offerings?”
“Damn it, that’s not important right now! Tell the others to come down. It’s not like the prisoners can run amok right?”
“So everyone here are the ones who are left.”
At that moment, that man’s tone suddenly changed.
“Huh? Wa, wait. Who are y······.”
It was over in a flash.
The guard noticed the man who had come down the escalator too late, as the other party’s fist had already landed on his face like a hammer, shattering it.
The hard skull was like a puffy bread.
At the same time he punched the guard, the man pulled out the pin on a grenade he had fished out of his jacket, and threw it at the others who had gathered around the truck.
None of them were able to react in a timely manner.
Without an exception, all of them were within the blast radius.
A grenade explosion, in front of such a monstrous blast, they could not resist in any way.
Even then, it wasn’t the end.
The moment a lucky survivor started to scream, a ‘tutu’ was heard from where he was. The sound of brief gunfire.
With a calm expression on his face, the man took care of everyone who had gathered around the truck in the time it took someone to spit.
There were no survivors.
Having finished what he wanted, Kim Tae Hoon turned around and eyed the grocery store that was located across the entrance on the first floor of the large shopping mall.
At that moment, Kim Tae Hoon’s intuition went off thanks to his Hobgoblin’s Intuition.
Kim Tae Hoon turned his head towards the left as he saw two fireballs the size of baseballs flying towards him.
As soon as one of the fireballs touched his jacket, it began to jump around and consume his jacket like a living creature, attempting to turn it into a giant fireball.
Kim Tae Hoon immediately took off his jacket, and pointed his gun at the other fireball and pulled the trigger as he jumped behind a counter.
At that moment, Kim Tae Hoon heard a voice in his ear.
“I didn’t think that I would be fighting a proper awakened so soon, but this is fun.”
It was the first time that he had heard this voice, but he was sure of one thing.
‘Lee Jin Sung.’
He knew whose voice it was.
Messiah’s leader, he was here.